With the growing popularity of the vegan diet among the general population and athletes, it is important to address some of the more common deficiencies found within this sub-population. These include:
- Vitamin B12
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids in the form of EPA and DHA
And of particular value for vegan athletes
It is also important to note factors related to protein intake in vegans. As most plant-based protein sources have an incomplete amino acid profile a variety of plant-based sources must be consumed. Furthermore, considering the lower digestibility of plant-based proteins alongside the possible increased presence of anti-nutrient factors, it has been speculated that vegans should consume towards the higher end of the recommended protein intakes if not higher. The ISSN recommends a broad range from as low as 1.4g/kg up to 3.2g/kg which depends on type of athletic activity and body composition goals.
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Rogerson, D., 2017. Vegan diets: practical advice for athletes and exercisers. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 14(1), p.36.